Obviously, 2020 did not turn out to be the year the experiential marketing and events industry originally intended. It was projected to be a year of prosperity; it was the beginning of a new decade! Instead, we faced what you could call the most substantial roadblock our industry has ever faced. However, the pandemic won’t keep us down for long. Until it passes, we’ve converted our resources from live events to virtual events or smaller outdoor gatherings (when safe). We’re ready, waiting and planning for a brighter future. While it’s may still too early to predict what 2021 will bring, we are optimistic. This is precisely why we’ve decided to share our top trends for events this year.
The micro-experience! Those of you who don’t know, micro-experiences are defined as “a meaningful branded experience” (GeoMarketing.com). Further to that point, Medium.com describes them as “a small, subtle, affordable or memorable touch that resonates with your customers for years.” To put this into perspective, think pop-ups, small samplings or surprise and delight events.
The great thing about micro-experiences is that they can be part of a strategic marketing plan targeting specific markets. Alternatively, you can use a set of micro-experiences, linking them as a chain, to create a province or even nationwide tour. This gives your brand the ability to leverage smaller experiences while still capitalizing on the many possible touchpoints with consumers from many different markets. Micro-experiences are unique because they can’t be recreated to the same extent online.
Two Components Are Better Than One
The second trend we’d like to discuss is the hybrid event predicted to gain popularity in 2021. Virtual has been great to help us get through these unprecedented times, but nothing can replace live events. Further to this point, it’s safe to say almost everyone is eagerly awaiting their return. Once it’s safe to do so, certain live events are back on a significant scale. However, we believe hybrid events will change the game. For those who cannot attend in person, now there is the opportunity to participate virtually. By offering both live and virtual options, you can broaden your audience and create a much larger footprint – locally and globally, depending on how you choose to market the event. Travelling solely for an event is expensive and, for some people, may become a thing of the past. As such, we predict the popularity of hybrid events will continue to rise.
Cutting Edge Technology
It may be our last point on this list, but technology is one of the most important top trend to consider. This tool, particularly how we can use it to elevate our events, should be at the forefront of our minds when planning an event. While virtual events dominated 2020, as we mentioned we believe hybrid options will be on the rise. However, to just blanket a trend as technology, is quite ambiguous so we want to dive a little deeper. While virtual and augmented reality are not new platforms, more and more brands are taking notice. They are finally seeing the benefits we’ve long been talking about! While they may not be the most budget-friendly option, their impact can pack a punch!
There are so many interesting and fun applications you can experience with these types of technologies. Consider a game or unique simulated environment to elevate the experience for your guests. Alternatively, use it to display branding in a fun and interactive way, such as consumers scanning a billboard. Essentially, if you can imagine it, it can be simulated. In addition to their function in hybrid events, they have many other benefits! For example, consider health and sustainability. They provide options to go paper and contactless, whether in a live or virtual setting. If that’s not cutting edge, then we don’t know what is!
About the Author: Tigris Events is an award-winning national event staffing and experiential marketing agency dedicated to developing meaningful consumer connections. They believe in the value of understanding your target market and implementing innovative event solutions and provide valuable market research results to directly impact your bottom line. The Tigris Events Agency’s in-house experiential marketing team uses a team-focused approach and client-centric work ethic to meet the needs and exceed the goals of each and every event/program.
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